Reading to My Girls {Simple Moment, Bigger Picture}

I was a brand new mom trying to figure out what being a mother was all about. I was navigating motherhood without a map, charting waters I was unfamiliar with. Spending time with a baby all day long was unlike anything I had ever done before. Changing diapers, nursing Lily, and laundry filled my day. Tummy time only lasted so long with Lily. One day, when Lily was about three months old, I wracked my brain as to what I could do with her to pass the time. Out of desperation or boredom, I’m not sure which, I sat her on my lap, grabbed Barnyard Dance by Sandra Boynton, and started reading aloud. I got through about three pages before Lily stopped paying attention and demanded the book to chew on. Every day, I read a little bit more and a little bit more, until I was able to read the whole book. All ten pages. Reading! Reading was something else I could do with my baby during those long hours at home!

I read with Emmy when she was even younger. We were barely home from the hospital when Lily demanded I read to her, and therefore, to Emmy.

Duck For President! (In looking at this picture of me, I realize 1. how tired I was after having another baby and 2. how much I look like my mother.)

After one of Emmy’s well baby check-ups, Lily embarrassed the heck outta me by throwing a temper tantrum when I couldn’t finish a waiting room book I had started reading to her while waiting for the doctor. One of my wishes is to pass on my love of reading to my girls, but she was carrying it a little overboard.

Emmy reads to her baby doll.

Emmy memorized the nursery rhymes in this set of board books and I caught her reciting this one to her doll. These chunky books were perfect for her plump little toddler hands to hold. Yes, that is a Hello Kitty Band Aid on her cheek. No, she does NOT have a need for that bandage to be on her cheek. This picture was taken during her Band Aid phase.

When reading, it is necessary to find a comfortable spot. An empty laundry basket will do just fine.

This moment lasted all of 2 seconds.

Emmy is famous for her temper tantrums. That tantrum Lily held in the doctor’s office? NOTHING compared to the tantrums we have had to endure from Emmy. Just a few weeks ago, Emmy had another temper tantrum. But this…was different. A box came with books for Lily, and none for Emmy. Lily had been dying to get her hands on the newest Magic Tree House book, Abe Lincoln at Last, so I ordered it for her along with the non-fiction companion as soon as it was available. Lily was thrilled when it came, and Emmy…threw a tantrum. Not so much a tantrum, but more of a whine fest. Because she wanted a book, too.

To me, lover of books, this seemed understandable. Emmy and I hopped online and looked for a book. She is now in a kitty phase, so she picked Bad Kitty Gets a Bath and Bad Kitty Meets the Baby, both by Nick Bruel. As soon as we received the books and  opened the box, I thought we were in for another tantrum. The first Bad Kitty is a picture book; these Bad Kitty books were chapter books. Emmy is not into chapter books. Lily, however, knows what makes her sister tick, and soon convinced Emmy that these books had too many pictures to really be chapter books. Even though that’s exactly what they are.

And I realized that my wish, one of my fondest wishes, has come true. Lily and Emmy love to read.

Simple BPM


Serve Me Up a Slice!

There has been some criticism of the new Honda CR-V commercial with Matthew Broderick reprising his role in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. So I gave in and watched it this morning. People have said that Matthew Broderick is a middle-aged man, not the youthful teen he was in the movie. I’m certainly no spring chicken; it was the summer before my senior year when the movie was released. The commercial was not shot in Chicago as the movie was; well,  if you were going to shoot a commercial in Chicago or LA, which city would you pick?

Near the end of the commercial, Broderick says “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Life moves pretty fast. If you didn’t stop and look around once in a while, you’d miss it.”

I may be one of the oldest moms waiting outside the preschool door. I may feel like some days all I do is laundry. It seems like my whole day is in the kitchen, feeding someone or washing dishes.

But as I sat and watched Matthew Broderick run around like a teenager, I realized that just this year, I acted like a teenager, too. Well, kinda.

I may have not jumped on a float and sang in a parade, but I was cheered on when I walked 39 miles in Chicago for breast cancer research.

Posing by the Chicago River after walking about 10 miles

I terrified my almost four year old daughter with a canoe ride on a Pennsylvania river.

Emmy making peace with the canoes that terrified her early in the day.

I rode my favorite roller coaster with my daughter, who was just tall enough this summer to ride.

Roller Coaster
Lily and my niece, after riding the Demon

I’m certainly not a teenager any more. But I’m going still going to act like one every once in while, and ride that roller coaster! Ferris Bueller was right. Life does move pretty fast. My 42nd year was pretty darn good. 43 will be better yet! (Did I mention today is my birthday?)

Serve me up a slice of that sweet ‘n sour life!

Simple BPM



And here, just for fun, is the Honda commercial: